Seminars helping nonprofits organize
By Mary Kaye Ritz
Advertiser Religion & Ethics Writer
Faith-based groups can learn more about providing help to the homeless through this free series, being put on by Volunteer Legal Services Hawai'i, 545 Queen St.
"Organizational Management and Responsibilities," 8:30 a.m. to noon April 30, by Cynthia Winegar.
"Fund Raising and Development Basics," 1:30-5 p.m. April 30, by Patti Look and Steve Kaneshiro.
"Basics of Accounting and Internal Controls," 9 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. May 21, by Wayne Tanna.
"How to Incorporate," 8:30 a.m. to noon June 21, by Kate Lloyd.
"How to Obtain Tax-Exempt Status," 1:30 to 5 p.m. June 21, by Kate Lloyd and Cathy Tokishi.
To register: www.vlsh.org/HOMES or 522-1858
"We're a small charity out in 'Aina Haina," said the executive director of the organization at Calvary-by-the-Sea, which offers food, rental assistance and training for families in transition. "For us, it's always hard to get additional training, and very expensive. It's very good they put on this seminar. We don't have a big budget to get training."
Bettie Wallace, nonprofit program coordinator for Volunteer Legal Services Hawai'i, said their aim is "capacity building," or strengthening groups and helping them harness their passion to help the homeless. They usually charge a $10 fee (but will waive it if the organization finds it a hardship to pay), though this slate of workshops is being offered free, thanks to a grant they've received.
"It's very helpful for new organizations, for people just getting off the ground," she said. "If you're passionate but have no idea about the practicality, (these workshops will help you) get organized, be able to receive grants and monies they'll need down the road."
Wilhelm called the two seminars, aimed at teaching faith-based organizations how to get themselves in good shape to serve the homeless, "very informative," and was looking forward to taking the detailed handouts back to her board of directors, which meets today.
"I only have good things to say about it," said Wilhelm, who continues the work of the late Ivy Olson, who started the nonprofit organization in 1989, taking in people in her home. Now, it serves up to 200 people per month through its food bank, and another five or 10 families a month with housing or rental assistance, household goods and clothing.
Several coming workshops walk new groups through the state process to become incorporated and then to get tax-exempt status.
"That's a little more complicated," Wallace said, "but Kate Lloyd, who does that workshop, knows this information inside and out."
That would be Katharine P. Lloyd, general counsel and charitable planning director for the Hawai'i Community Foundation.
Wondering how to conduct board and membership meetings? How do you research sources of money and go looking for grants? How do you use your newsletter as a promotional tool? Other workshops help people new to a board, who may not be clear what their fiduciary responsibility is, or helps new staff learn about fund raising and the basics of accounting.
The workshops are being held by the VLSH HOMES (Higher Organizational Management Effectiveness and Sustainability) Project, made possible by a grant from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Administration for Children and Families.